At 56 years old, Michael Cohen physical status not available right now. We will update Michael Cohen's height, weight, eye color, hair color, build, and measurements.
Cohen began practicing personal injury law in New York in 1992, working for Melvyn Estrin in Manhattan. As of 2003, Cohen was an attorney in private practice and CEO of MLA Cruises, Inc., and of the Atlantic Casino.
In 2006, Cohen was a partner at the law firm Phillips, Nizer, Benjamin, Krim & Ballon. He practiced law at the firm for about a year before joining The Trump Organization. Following his 2018 felony convictions, Cohen was automatically disbarred in New York.
In 2003, Cohen was a candidate for New York City Council when he provided a biography to the New York City Campaign Finance Board for inclusion in its voters' guide. The guide listed him as co-owner of Taxi Funding Corp. and a fleet of New York City taxicabs numbering over 200. At the time, Cohen was a business partner in the taxi business with "taxi king" Simon Garber. As of 2017, Cohen was estimated to own at least 34 taxi medallions through 17 limited liability companies (LLCs). Until April 2017, another "taxi king", disbarred attorney and convicted felon Gene Freidman, managed the medallions still held by Cohen; this arrangement ended after the city's Taxi and Limousine Commission decided not to renew Freidman's licenses. Between April and June 2017, the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance filed seven tax warrants against Cohen and his wife for $37,434 in unpaid taxi taxes due to the MTA.
Cohen has been involved in real estate ventures in Manhattan, including the purchase and sale of four apartment buildings between 2011 and 2014. The total purchase price of the four buildings was $11 million and the total sales price was $32 million. Cohen sold the four properties at above their assessed values, in all-cash transactions, to LLCs owned by persons whose identities are not public. After this was reported by McClatchy DC in October 2017, Cohen said that all four properties were purchased by an American-owned "New York real estate family fund" that paid cash for the properties in order to obtain a tax deferred (Section 1031) exchange, but did not specifically identify the buyer.
In 2015, Cohen purchased an Upper East Side apartment building for $58 million.
Cohen volunteered for the 1988 presidential campaign of Michael Dukakis. He was also an intern for Congressman Joe Moakley and voted for Barack Obama in 2008, although he later stated that he became disappointed with Obama.
In 2003, he unsuccessfully ran as a Republican for the New York City Council from the Fourth Council District (a Manhattan district). Cohen received 4,205 votes and was defeated by Democratic candidate Eva S. Moskowitz, who received 13,745 votes. In 2010, Cohen briefly campaigned for a seat in the New York State Senate. He was a registered Democrat until he officially registered as a Republican on March 9, 2017. On October 11, 2018, Cohen re-registered as a Democrat in an effort to distance "himself from the values of the current" administration.
Cohen joined the Trump Organization in fall of 2006. Trump hired him in part because he was already an admirer of Trump, having read Trump's Art of the Deal twice. He had purchased several Trump properties and convinced his own parents and in-laws, as well as a business partner, to buy condominiums in Trump World Tower. Cohen aided Trump in his struggle with the condominium board at the Trump World Tower, which led Trump to obtain control of the board. Cohen became a close confidant to Trump, maintaining an office near Trump at Trump Tower.
Cohen was named COO of mixed martial arts promotion company Affliction Entertainment in which Trump held a significant financial stake.
While Cohen was an executive at the organization, he was known as Trump's "pit bull". In late 2011, when Trump was publicly speculating about running for the 2012 Republican Party presidential nomination, Cohen co-founded the website "Should Trump Run?" to draft Trump into entering the race.
In an interview with ABC News in 2011, Cohen stated, "If somebody does something Mr. Trump doesn't like, I do everything in my power to resolve it to Mr. Trump's benefit. If you do something wrong, I'm going to come at you, grab you by the neck and I'm not going to let you go until I'm finished."
In 2013, Cohen sent an email to the satirical news website The Onion, demanding that an article The Onion had published that mocked Donald Trump ("When You're Feeling Low, Just Remember I'll Be Dead In About 15 or 20 Years") be removed with an apology, claiming it was defamatory.
In 2015, in response to an inquiry by reporter Tim Mak of The Daily Beast concerning rape allegations (brought up in the 1980s but later recanted) by Ivana Trump about her then-husband Donald Trump, Cohen said, "I'm warning you, tread very fucking lightly, because what I'm going to do to you is going to be fucking disgusting."
In January 2016, according to The Washington Post, Cohen sent an e-mail to Dmitry Peskov which was the "most direct outreach documented by a top Trump aide to a similarly senior member of Putin's government."
A video of an interview of Cohen by CNN's Brianna Keilar went viral, in which Cohen said "Says who?" several times in response to Keilar's statement that Trump was behind in all of the polls. Cohen defended Trump against charges of antisemitism.
In 2016, he was a co-founder, along with Darrell C. Scott, of the National Diversity Coalition for Trump. Peter J. Gleason, a lawyer who filed for protection of documents pertaining to two women with sexual abuse allegations against Eric T. Schneiderman, stated—without offering details or corroborating evidence—that Cohen told him that if Trump had been elected governor of New York in 2013, the latter would have helped bring the accusations to public attention.
The Steele dossier, published in January 2017, alleges that Cohen met with Russian officials in Prague, Czech Republic, in 2016 with the objective of paying those who had hacked the DNC and to "cover up all traces of the hacking operation". The dossier contains raw intelligence, and is thought to be a mix of accurate and inaccurate information. Cohen denied the allegations against him, stating that he was in Los Angeles between August 23 and 29, and in New York for the entire month of September. According to a Czech intelligence source, there is no record of him entering Prague by plane, but Respekt magazine and Politico pointed out that he could have theoretically entered by car or train from a neighboring country within the Schengen Area, for example Italy. In the latter case, a record of Cohen entering the Schengen zone from a non-Schengen country should exist, if it occurred. However, on April 13, 2018, the DC Bureau of McClatchy Newspapers reported that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has evidence that Cohen did travel to Prague during the late summer of 2016, with two sources having confirmed this secret trip. The evidence is said to show that Cohen entered the Czech Republic from Germany, and since both countries are in the European Union's Schengen passport area, Cohen would not have needed to receive a passport stamp to enter Czech territory. The following day, Cohen again denied he has "ever been to Prague". Cohen also said that he didn't travel to the European Union in August 2016. McClatchy reported in December 2018 that a mobile phone traced to Cohen had "pinged" cellphone towers around Prague in late summer 2016. McClatchy also reported that during that time an eastern European intelligence agency had intercepted communications between Russians, one of whom mentioned that Cohen was in Prague. However, the Mueller Report states "Cohen had never traveled to Prague and was not concerned about those allegations, which he believed were provably false": 139
In late January 2017, Cohen met with Ukrainian opposition politician Andrey Artemenko and Felix Sater at the Loews Regency in Manhattan to discuss a plan to lift sanctions against Russia. The proposed plan would require that Russian forces withdraw from eastern Ukraine and that Ukraine hold a referendum on whether Crimea should be "leased" to Russia for 50 or 100 years. Cohen was given a written proposal in a sealed envelope that he delivered to then-National Security Advisor Michael Flynn in early February.
On April 3, 2017, Cohen was appointed as one of three national deputy finance chairmen of the Republican National Committee, along with Elliott Broidy and Louis DeJoy. In April 2017, Cohen also formed an alliance with Squire Patton Boggs for legal and lobbying counsel on behalf of Trump.
In May 2017, amidst expanding inquiries into alleged Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election, two congressional panels asked Cohen to provide information about any communications he had with people connected to the Russian government. He was a subject of the Mueller investigation in 2018. Because of these investigations, Michael Cohen and Donald Trump signed a joint defense agreement allowing their attorneys to share information during the Mueller investigations and joint defense agreements were arranged between Donald Trump and both Michael Flynn and Paul Manafort. Cohen retained an attorney with Davidoff Hutcher & Citron who later represented Rudy Giuliani, too.
In May 2018, BBC News falsely reported that Cohen had received a secret payment of between $400,000 and $600,000 from intermediaries for Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to arrange a meeting between Poroshenko and Trump, though Cohen was not registered as a foreign agent. Cohen and the Ukrainian president's office denied the allegations. The BBC ended up having to state the allegation was untrue, apologizing to Poroshenko, deleting the article from its website, paying legal costs, and paying damages to Poroshenko.
In May 2018, Rudy Giuliani announced that Cohen was no longer Trump's lawyer. In July, seized tapes secretly recorded by Cohen of his conversations with Trump about hush payments to Karen McDougal were disclosed to The New York Times, seemingly contradicting earlier statements by Trump denying knowledge of the payments, and raising questions about campaign-finance ethics. Cohen also asserted that then-candidate Trump knew in advance about the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting between his son Donald Jr., and other Trump campaign officials with Russians who claimed to possess information damaging to the Hillary Clinton campaign, contradicting the President's repeated insistence that he was not aware of the meeting until long after it had taken place.
In June 2018, Cohen resigned as deputy finance chairman of the Republican National Committee. His resignation letter cited the ongoing investigations and also criticized the Trump administration's policy of separating undocumented families at the border.
In 2015 president of Liberty University Jerry Falwell Jr. reached out to Cohen and asked him for a personal favor. Falwell had told Cohen that a third party had obtained compromising photos of Falwell's wife. Cohen met with the third party and after the meeting the person destroyed the photos.
In the fall of 2016, adult film actress Stormy Daniels (legal name Stephanie Clifford) was speaking to some reporters and said that she had had a sexual affair with Trump in 2006. In October, Cohen and Daniels' attorney Keith M. Davidson negotiated a non-disclosure agreement under which she was to be paid $130,000 hush money. Cohen created a Delaware LLC called Essential Consultants and used it to pay the $130,000. The arrangement was reported by The Wall Street Journal in January 2018.
Cohen told The New York Times in February 2018 that he paid the $130,000 to Daniels from his own pocket; he also said that the payment was not a campaign contribution and he was not reimbursed by either the Trump Organization or the Trump campaign. The Washington Post later noted that, by stating that he used his own money to "facilitate" the payment, Cohen was not ruling out the possibility that Trump, as an individual, reimbursed Cohen for the payment. In April 2018, Trump acknowledged for the first time that Cohen has represented him in the Stormy Daniels case, after previously having denied knowledge of the $130,000 payment.
On March 5, The Wall Street Journal cited anonymous sources recounting Cohen as saying he missed two deadlines to pay Daniels because Cohen "couldn't reach Mr. Trump in the hectic final days of the presidential campaign", and that after Trump's election, Cohen had complained that he had not been reimbursed for the payment. Cohen described this report as "fake news".
On March 9, NBC News reported that Cohen had used his Trump Organization email to negotiate with Daniels regarding her nondisclosure agreement, and that Cohen had used the same Trump Organization email to arrange for a transfer for funds that would eventually lead to Daniels' payment. In response, Cohen acknowledged that he had transferred funds from his home equity line of credit to the LLC and from the LLC to Daniels' attorney.
In a March 25, 2018, interview with 60 Minutes, Daniels said that she and Trump had sex once, and that later she had been threatened in front of her infant daughter and felt pressured to later sign a non-disclosure agreement.
On March 26, David Schwarz, a lawyer for Cohen, told ABC's Good Morning America that Daniels was lying in the 60 Minutes interview. Cohen's lawyer sent a cease-and-desist letter claiming Daniels' statements constituted "libel per se and intentional infliction of emotional distress" to Cohen.
Cohen initiated a private arbitration case against Daniels in February 2018, based on an October 2016 non-disclosure agreement signed by Daniels in October 2016, in exchange for $130,000. Cohen obtained an order from an arbitrator barring Daniels from publicly discussing her alleged relationship with Trump. Daniels subsequently brought a lawsuit in federal court against Trump and Cohen, arguing that the non-disclosure agreement is legally invalid because Trump never signed it, Cohen responded by seeking to compel arbitration, which would avoid public proceedings. In April 2018, Cohen filed a declaration in the court saying that he would invoke his Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate himself in the Daniels lawsuit.
On May 18, lawyers for Cohen filed an objection to Daniel's lawyer Michael Avenatti being allowed to represent her in a case involving Cohen, claiming it (the objection) was based on the violations of ethical rules and local court rules, among other issues. After Cohen's August 2018 conviction, Trump stated that the payment to Daniels came from him personally and not from the campaign during a Fox & Friends interview.
In 2016, Karen McDougal, a former Playboy model, claimed that she and Trump had an affair from 2006 until 2007, a claim that Trump has since denied. The National Enquirer paid McDougal $150,000 for her story but never published it, a practice known as catch and kill. On September 30, 2016, Cohen created Resolution Consultants LLC, a Delaware shell company, to purchase the rights to McDougal's story from the National Enquirer, though the rights to the story were ultimately never purchased.
Cohen had been known to record conversations and phone calls with other people. According to his lawyer Lanny Davis, "Michael Cohen had the habit of using his phone to record conversations instead of taking notes." Altogether the prosecutors have been given more than one hundred audio recordings from the material seized from Cohen in the April 2018 raid, after the Trump team withdrew their claims of privilege for those items; reportedly only one of them features a substantive conversation with Trump. The existence of that tape was revealed on July 20 and the actual recording was released on July 25.
On July 20, it was revealed that Cohen secretly recorded a conversation between Trump and him. The discussion involved a potential hush payment to the publisher of the National Enquirer. The recording had been classified as a privileged attorney–client communication by the Special Master reviewing the Cohen material, but Trump's attorneys waived that claim, meaning that prosecutors can have it and use it. The conversation in that tape occurred in September 2016, two months before the election and weeks after the Enquirer paid McDougal the $150,000. In the conversation, Trump and Cohen discuss whether to buy the rights to her story from the Enquirer, and Trump appears to approve the idea. Trump's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, initially claimed that the tape shows Trump saying "make sure it's done correctly, and make sure it's done by check." Giuliani also noted that no payment was ultimately made, and asserted that Trump's team waived privilege and allowed the recording to be revealed because it shows no violation of law. The recording appears to contradict Hope Hicks, then Trump's spokeswoman, who said when the story of the Enquirer payment came out a few days before the election that the Trump campaign had "no knowledge of any of this".
On July 25, Cohen's attorney Lanny Davis released the actual recording to CNN, which played it on the air on the Cuomo Prime Time program. On it, Trump can be heard concluding a telephone conversation with an unidentified person and then discussing several items of business with Cohen. Cohen mentions that he needs to "open up a company for the transfer of all of that info regarding our friend David", interpreted as meaning David Pecker, the head of American Media, which publishes the National Enquirer. Later when they discuss financing, Trump is heard saying something about "pay with cash", to which Cohen responds "no, no, no", but the tape is unclear and it is disputed what is said next; the word "check" can be heard. A transcript provided by Trump's attorneys has Trump saying "Don't pay with cash ... check." The tape cuts off abruptly at that point. A lawyer for the Trump Organization said that any reference to "cash" would not have meant "green currency", but a one-time payment ("cash") vs. extended payments ("financing"), in either case accompanied by documents. According to Aaron Blake at The Washington Post, "the tape provides the first evidence that Trump spoke with Cohen about purchasing the rights to women's stories—apparently to silence them—before the 2016 election." He also notes that Cohen speaks in "somewhat coded language", which Trump understands, suggesting that he is already familiar with the issue.
Despite the taped conversation, on August 23, in a Fox News interview Trump stated that he was not aware of the hush-money payments until "later on": "Later on I knew. Later on. What he did—and they weren't taken out of the campaign finance, that's the big thing." He added: "In fact, my first question when I heard about it was, did they come out of the campaign, because that could be a little dicey. And they didn't come out of the campaign and that's big. But they weren't ... that's not even a campaign violation." According to U.S. election rules, any payments intended to influence an election vote must be reported.
In April 2018, The Wall Street Journal reported that Shera Bechard, a former Playboy Playmate, had an affair with married Republican fundraiser Elliott Broidy. She became pregnant by him, had an abortion, and was to be paid $1.6 million hush money. Broidy, a Republican fundraiser, was a deputy finance chairman of the Republican National Committee along with Cohen and DeJoy.
In a 2018 court proceeding, Cohen said he had given legal advice to only three clients in 2017: Donald Trump, Sean Hannity, and Elliott Broidy. In late 2017, Cohen arranged the $1.6 million payment by Broidy to Bechard as part of a nondisclosure agreement requiring Bechard to keep silent about the matter. Cohen was Broidy's attorney and Keith M. Davidson represented Bechard. Davidson had previously been the attorney for Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal. The Bechard nondisclosure agreement used the same pseudonyms—David Dennison for the man and Peggy Peterson for the woman—as in the Daniels agreement. The payments were to be made in installments.
On July 6, 2018, Bechard filed a lawsuit against Broidy, Davidson, and Daniels' attorney Michael Avenatti, claiming the three had breached the agreement in relation to the cessation of the settlement payments.
Essential Consultants LLC is a Delaware shell company created by Cohen in October 2016 to facilitate payment of hush money to Stormy Daniels. For many months thereafter, Cohen used the LLC for an array of business activities largely unknown to the public, with at least $4.4 million moving through the LLC between Trump's election to the presidency and January 2018. In May 2018, Stormy Daniels' lawyer Michael Avenatti posted a seven-page report to Twitter detailing what he said were financial transactions involving Essential Consultants and Cohen. Avenatti did not reveal the source of his information, which was later largely confirmed by The New York Times and other publications. The data showed that hundreds of thousands of dollars were given to Cohen, via Essential Consultants, from Fortune 500 firms such as Novartis and AT&T, which had business before the Trump administration. It was also revealed that Essential Consultants had received at least $500,000 from a New York-based investment firm called Columbus Nova, which is linked to a Russian oligarch. The firm's largest client is a company controlled by Viktor Vekselberg, a Ukrainian-born Russian oligarch. Vekselberg is a business partner of Soviet-born billionaire and major Republican Party donor, Leonard Blavatnik. A spokesperson for Columbus Nova said that the payment was a consulting fee that had nothing to do with Vekselberg.
Questions were raised about many of the payments, such as four totaling $200,000 that AT&T paid to the LLC between October 2017 and January 2018, while at the same time the proposed merger between the company and Time Warner was pending before the Justice Department. AT&T claimed that the money was paid to the LLC and other firms that were used to provide insights into understanding the new administration, and that the LLC did no legal or lobbying work for AT&T.
On May 11, 2018, the CEO of AT&T stated that in early 2017 it was approached by Cohen to provide "his opinion on the new president and his administration". Cohen was paid $600,000 ($50,000 per month) over the year, which its CEO described as "a big mistake". Novartis was also approached by Cohen and was offered similar services.
Novartis, a Switzerland–based pharmaceutical giant paid the LLC nearly $1.2 million in separate payments. Novartis released a statement May 9, 2018, that it hired the LLC to help the company understand the "health care policy" of the new administration, but it actually did not receive benefit for its investment. The statement continued that Novartis made a decision to not engage Essential Consultants further, but it could not terminate the contract for "cause", raising concerns on why the company did not pursue reimbursement.
Korea Aerospace Industries paid $150,000, ostensibly for advice on "cost accounting standards".
Franklin L. Haney agreed to pay Cohen $10 million if he successfully lobbied for the United States Department of Energy to finance the Bellefonte Nuclear Generating Station, or a reduced fee if the funding targets were only partially met.
It’s probably impossible to rank Donald Trump scandals. We’d be here all day! But this is definitely one of the biggest from a rule of law perspective. It’s just, you know, a bit late to the game. But you know what? We know about it now!
OK, so let’s rewind. Remember the Mueller Probe? Prosecutor Robert Mueller was tapped as a special counsel to investigate any possible collusion between agents of the Russian government and Donald Trump. It was an important mission because we don’t ever want people in office when they are at all beholden to foreign interests. What Russia wants and what America needs are far different prospects — especially with a crooked killer like Vladimir Putin in charge over there.
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